Monday, February 29, 2016

Mothering Monday: Josef's First Official Basketball Experience

My third son, Josef, has always been the most athletic of all my sons. When he was little, he always played with balls. Over the years, he has developed a sincere interest in basketball. Because of our frequent moves, and the cost of activities, he has never had the opportunity to play on a real team. He has attended local basketball camps twice. This year he played with a city league.

Josef's team was really good. They had a good mix of boys with different skills. At first, the team relied heavily upon a few boys who were quite talented, but over the course of the season, the boys started to work together more and build on their own talents. They played and defeated each of the other teams in the league.

Because of their perfect record, Josef's team did not play in the tournament. They were automatically given a spot at the championship game. The final game was last Saturday and it was the most intense game. The opposing team went into prove themselves against Josef's undefeated team. The two teams were neck and neck the whole game. Unfortunately, the coach for Josef's team kept losing his temper and got two technical fouls against his team. Josef didn't play very much, which really disappointed me. In the end, because of a couple of fouls, the other team won.

It was a pretty bitter defeat, made worse by the coach. Instead of congratulating the boys on such an amazing season and building them up about their hard work during the game, he was so angry that he just let the boys go to feel bad about themselves and the game.

I had mixed feelings about the coach. On one hand, he did a great job helping them grow as a team and recognizing each boy's potential. On the other hand, he would yell at the boys when they made mistakes, which made them afraid to try. I saw Josef's confidence in his abilities wane throughout the season. Because he lost confidence, he didn't play as well. He is a really good player. He handles the ball with skill and confidence. He can move quickly and dribble well. He needs practice shooting, but that is something he can work on.

I realize that I fall into the same trap as the coach. I lose my temper and don't build my kids up when they make mistakes and so they lose their confidence.

I am going to do all I can to encourage Josef to stick with basketball. He is good and has a natural love of the game.


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